A quick round up ‘Take 5…’ post this week, as I’m currently researching rugs for our newly decorated hallway and thought I’d share a selection of looks on here that I’m loving at the minute. We painted our hallway wood panelling in an off white and brought the original oak floor back to life with a sand and wax job, so now I feel the space needs a pop of pattern or subtle wash of colour to add warmth and interest. I’ve recently been loving the whole ethnic / bohemian look when it comes to floor coverings and every time I open Pinterest it seems to be tempting me with a new take on the look. The one slight issue is that authentic Persian rugs cost an absolute bomb, however I think you can recreate a similar look with some great alternative styles, each with their own relaxed, boho vibe that I find so appealing.
Here are a few favourites… (more…)
It’s been a little quiet from me over the past fortnight, but there’s been a very valid excuse for my lack of presence! We have been redecorating our hallway, stairs and landing, which was always going to be our big project for this year (last year’s was the kitchen/living makeover), and so things were turned a little upside down around here for a few days whilst the painter was in. However, I am pleased to say I can finally share some pictures of the (almost) finished result with you – there is still carpet to be laid on the stairs at the end of the week but I couldn’t wait that long to show you around… I have never been known for my patience :)
In this age of social media and social sharing, it seems we can’t say we’ve truly enjoyed a meal without having shared it with our Instagram community or Facebook friends, taking perfect shots of our plates in the hope of capturing the moment and enticing the senses of others. As a blogger, I am a totally guilty party on this front, so I was really delighted to be invited along to my local IKEA store here in Belfast to learn some top tips on styling and photographing food and kitchen wares for that perfect Instagrammable shot. As a homes and interiors blogger, I haven’t worked with foodie styling that much in the past, however with IKEA’s gorgeous new Summer 2017 dining and kitchenware ranges in-store, I was excited to get to use their products whilst creating some Insta-worthy shots.
Local stylist and all-round Instagram guru, Eve Brannon, was on hand during the evening helping us create a Swedish ‘smorgasbord’, which is essentially sharing plates of tapas-style food which is enjoyed by family and friends together around the table, everyone helping themselves in true feel-good ‘hygge’ fashion. Eve showed us how to style the various ingredients on our own individual smorgasbords, all the while imparting some invaluable tips on how to make our culinary creations totally and deliciously ‘Instagram-able’, using food and serving ware which can all be bought in-store.
Another Take 5 post for you today, folks, and this week it’s all about the über-trendy sheepskin throw and how you can make it work hard in your home all year round. Many people consider sheepskin to be a strictly winter-only luxury, however it is an extremely versatile piece of home decor kit and more affordable than ever with plenty of faux options to choose from out there.
Here are some of my favourite ways to work sheepskin in the home and some tips on where to buy those key items…
Hello, I hope you had a lovely, restful weekend. I spent some time away with my mum and sister, but I’ve returned to my brood feeling really refreshed and ready to take on the major redecorating project in our home for this year – the hallway.
As you’ll probably be aware, our house was built in the 1930s and the previous owners thankfully retained many of the house’s original features, including picture rails, the front and back doors, leadlights and stained glass windows and the wood panelling on the hallway, stairs and landing walls. Over the past year, I have deliberated over what to do in the hall and whether or not to repaint the panelling, especially now that there is a definite trend towards darker, more cocooning surfaces, however we have decided that repainting the wood in a lighter colour is the way forward for us. It will completely transform the space into a lighter and brighter part of the house and modernise it without compromising on the traditional, elegant feel that the original wood panelling brings to our home.
We also need to recarpet the stairs and landing and source some nice new lighting and other accessories, so lots to think about. Thankfully, when we lifted the carpet up in the hall, we discovered a gorgeous and pretty much unscathed original wooden floor hiding beneath, so a light sand and dark stain should see that right. (Hopefully!)
I’ve been having a nosey around Pinterest for some hallway inspiration, so here are some favourite ideas I want to share with you. All these hallways have wood panelling of some kind, so it’s interesting to see how the owners have approached it.
I have been asked a few times to feature my garden on here and share some of what I have learnt as a (very much) novice gardener since we moved into our home last Spring. Now that a full year has turned around in the garden, I feel that I’m gradually getting to know the place and the plants that reside here, plus I’ve gained more confidence in dealing with the various trees, shrubs and flowers that I’ve come to recognise. A year ago if you’d asked me what a herbaceous perennial was, I’d have thought you’d taken up a new foreign language. It really was Double Dutch to me.
So, as it’s the height of the growing season now and there’s more green lushness and splashes of colour about, I thought it the ideal time to show you around. I suppose it’s a decent enough size for a suburban garden, which is perfect for us, as it’s challenging enough without being overwhelming and there’s plenty of room for the kids to play outdoors, too.
Final point: as a complete novice, I have always found gardening to-do lists and jobs for the month incredibly useful for clarifying and prioritising what I should be investing my time on outside, so I’ve written up a little list of jobs for May at the end of the post, if you’re interested. So, all that remains is for you to pull on your wellies and come for a look around!
In a bid to blog a little more frequently for all you lovely readers, I’m going to intersperse longer content-heavy posts with some briefer, snapshot-style inspirational posts looking at key areas in the home that have particular design looks or decor tricks that have worked that you may wish to recreate. Today I’ve gathered five inspiring interior shots where indoor plants just make it all work. After all, we’re being blessed with some fine May weather at the moment and spending lots more time in our gardens, but why not bring a little lush greenery into the home, too, for those days when it all clouds over but we still need some sunshine inside our four walls.
I’ve also added some notes on how to recreate any of the looks for yourself… so, enjoy browsing!
May has arrived in all its glory here and across the country, patio tables and chairs have been dusted down, or in some cases, entirely stripped and repainted (you can get carried away when the sun shines), and friends invited over for impromptu barbecues and drinks in the garden. It’s fabulous!
I was planning a patio tidy up myself recently, when Amara Living got in touch asking me to take a look at some of their summer dining collection. As a blogger, I had initially heard of Amara as they host the IBAs (Interior Blog Awards), however if you haven’t come across them before, they are an über stylish homes and lifestyle store, housing over 300 of the world’s most luxurious home fashion brands, including Orla Kiely, Missoni Home, Ralph Lauren, HAY and Bloomingville, to name but a few. Amara have evolved since their inception in 2005 to build on their brand and product range, however quality of service and luxury style remain at their core and their website definitely reflects this.
Here are some products I want to show you in all their summery loveliness…
Well folks, May Day weekend is almost upon us and despite the recent cooler climes we’ve all been exposed to over the last little while, I’m told that warmer weather is on its way, so I thought it was the perfect time for a brief garden-related post. Specifically, I want to share some ideas with you on how you can spend some time over the long weekend getting your outdoor patio area or yard summer-ready. As long as it’s been given a quick clean up and the boring jobs such as power washing slabs and giving the lawn its first cut are out of the way, these are the fun touches you can accomplish in time for your first al fresco soiree with friends or simply a glass of vino and a book on a clear evening. Aah, how I love summer!
In early 2016, Instagram changed its algorithm, i.e. the way it chooses to display your personal feed, so that rather than presenting users with a chronological list of posts (the whole point of the ‘insta’ bit!), the algorithm organises your feed based on “the likelihood you’ll be interested in the content, your relationship with the person posting, and the timeliness of the post”.
In a nutshell, Instagram now decides on what it thinks you’d like to see in your feed, a lot like the way Facebook has been operating for some time. Many Instagrammers, including myself, have been struggling with this new algorithm, noticing more people following then immediately unfollowing them (the sure sign an insta-bot is involved somewhere) and not seeing some of their favourite feeds appear at the top of the page, literally for months!
I recently read an Instagram post by a fellow blogger, Bee, who blogs over at Queenbeady, about how she’s plain fed up with all this fake-followers-on-Instagram business and she urged fellow ‘grammers to share their favourite feeds from any sphere of interest, be it homes and interiors, lifestyle, nature, food, gardening, anything. I discovered some fabulous accounts that I didn’t know existed, but I simply have too many personal favourites to share on one Instagram post, so I thought why not share my own favourites on the blog?
Keeping to the homes and interiors theme, here is a rundown of the Instagram accounts I think you should check out today, which I have organised depending on the interior ‘look’ you’re into… starting with modern country, moving to scandi, then onto a more eclectic mix of styles and finishing with coastal style.
…be prepared for a huge dose of pure loveliness and incredible home inspiration!